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U.K. Retail Sales Post Biggest Quarterly Drop Since Early 2010

  • Sales volumes fall 1.4% in first quarter; down 1.8% in March
  • Figures suggest consumer spending is slowing amid inflation
A shopper checks her mobile phone as she stands on an escalator at the Westfield Stratford City shopping mall in London, U.K., on Thursday, Dec. 27, 2012.
Photographer: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg
Updated on

U.K. retail sales recorded their largest decline in seven years in the first quarter as consumers felt the pinch from accelerating inflation.

The volume of goods sold in stores and online fell 1.4 percent from the previous three months, the most since early 2010, the Office for National Statistics said on Friday. In March alone, sales dropped 1.8 percent, far exceeding the 0.5 percent decline forecast by economists.